As I blogged a while back, since I began my practice, clients and others have been approaching me and asking what good books could I recommend for some particular aspect of social media. I’m always happy to supply titles when I can for several reasons. First, because I hope it makes me appear well read and confident enough in my own abilities to recommend someone else’s work. Next, I recognize that not everyone is ready to jump into the deep end with social media and they require some time to think about what they’re getting into before either launching a social media program or engaging a consultant to help them do so. Finally, there are social media professionals out there with some very good thinking and who have taken the trouble to write some very good books. They deserve their due.
So, I will from time to time give reviews on books which I think are good value for the money and can be helpful to either newcomers or advanced users. My last book review was on “The LinkedIn Code” by Melonie Dodaro.
In this post I’ll review “The Tao of Twitter, Revised and Expanded New Edition: Changing Your Life and Business 140 Characters at a Time” by Mark W. Schaefer, a globally recognized marketing guru in social media. Coincidentally, I’d just finished reading the last edition of Mark’s book and was planning a book review when the current edition came out. Seemed as good a reason as any to me to read the latest edition!
I don’t often comment on writers’ feelings but Mark has a passion for social media and Twitter in particular and it comes through loud and clear in his writing.
Mark currently runs his own business, Schaefer Marketing Solutions, writes a very successful blog, and is a faculty member of the graduate studies program at Rutgers University. He is a much sought after speaker and has appeared on leading media channels.
His book, “The Tao of Twitter,” is a short work, only 136 pages, but is filled with good, relevant content.
The book is divided into two parts. The first is a deep dive into the guts of Twitter which I recommend for all, even very knowledgeable users. The second part goes into advanced features and is well worth the price of the book by itself.
Mark approaches the use of Twitter by what he calls the three Taos, building a community, providing content, and being helpful. He uses liberally from his own experience and that of others to reinforce points. I found these to be very helpful.
His Taos are broken into programs that users can adapt readily for their own needs. Mark notes third party tools which can be used to enhance one’s Twitter experience.
If someone has one of the earlier editions of this book, should they buy this latest one?
This latest edition covers changes made by Twitter and adapts the material to the evolving use of Twitter since the last publication. This is not simply a new cover on an old book.
What I like in particular about this book is the following:
1) It’s succinct and to the point as well as current.
2) The examples used are effective and relevant.
3) In particular, what I like is how Mark makes the case for how people in regulated industries like financial services and healthcare can use Twitter safely. I have several clients who struggle with this and trust me they’re going to be hearing about this book!
In closing, I’m confident in recommending this book to anyone who is trying to understand how to use Twitter in a business environment. If you already own an earlier edition buying this one is a good investment. Finally, follow Mark on Twitter! Also, subscribe to his list of All Stars from the book. It’s a very helpful added bonus! Don’t forget to follow his blog either!
In the meantime, thank you for following and reading my blog!
I look forward to any and all comments that you may have. I will reply to any comments made to this blog post as promptly as I can.
I work with social media for a living and if I can be of any assistance to either you or your organization, please feel free to call on me. Our initial discussion will be of no charge to you.
I can also be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My Twitter handle is @conpsweeney.